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I am ISHIMWE Marie Pascaline Sabine. I will be 19 years old in September. I am the first born among 5 siblings. We live in Rutsiro district but went to school in Ecole des Science de Musanze offering mathematics, chemistry and biology (MCB). I am very happy to day. In fact I cannot express my gratitude to MasterCard through FAWE Rwanda for this moment of happiness. I got 4 ‘As’ 73 aggregates in national examinations meaning that I have a ticket to studying in university.

Looking back to where the FAWE/MasterCard Foundation Scholars Program found me, I give thanks to God. After primary six national exams, I performed well and was rewarded by IMBUTO Foundation but studying in secondary school was a nightmare. School fees was very hard to get, sometimes I was sent home only to come back few weeks later without school fees sometimes I missing exams. None the less I passed with division one of 10 points and was the first in my school. However, the excitement was short lived because I remembered that my parents are not able to pay for me in high school.

The day I got this scholarship was one of the most exciting days in my life. After a briefing from a staff of FAWE Rwanda I knew that the ball was in my court. MasterCard was supporting me to fly. I had had a dream of becoming a medical doctor but it had died down in lower secondary school when school fees and scholastic materials were a problem. I started dreaming again and this made me struggle to make good use of the opportunity. I studied with commitment with the aim of becoming the best in all I did. I was award the best academic performer throughout the 3years in the program and was given a certificate.

My grades and my conduct in school were a combined effort of good programs such as mentoring and ‘Tuseme’ which were a great motivation not only to great academic performance also becoming a complete person with life skills, self-esteem. Before leadership and public speaking were terrifying to me. My mentor always told us that we have to be exemplary and I started practicing this came true when I was chosen to lead others from my sector in the itorero national service I took it with pride. My strength comes from MCF program.

I learn to save and have invested, I have 8 hens and one pig. What comes out of these pays school fees for my siblings who are in secondary school.
I know that health is the greatest wealth, so I want to become a medical doctor to help my community get the best health services. I also participate in cooperatives of the youth to gain experience for I want to create many that will be focusing on development of the youth.

My advice to my peers is that they should not give up but try to do their best in what they do to redefine their destiny, and reminding them that chance comes only once.
MasterCard is a blessing to my family at large and also to me now and tomorrow.

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Tags: Fawe, Education, Girls

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